7 Ups & 2 Downs From Last Night's WWE SmackDown (July 31)
2. Good Storytelling, Subpar Work
Booking this match was a smart way to build on both Andrade Almas' victory over Rusev last week and the ongoing tension between 'The Bulgarian Brute' and his allies. Lana's challenge was believable, as it was her ringside argument with Vega that spurred said defeat, and it was another notch in the win column for the ex-NXT double-act, but this isn't enough to transcend six stodgy minutes of subpar work.
They started with some basic trash talk and evasion, then worked through several slow control periods, passing the momentum back and forth. Technically sound, but unengaging. Big moves eventually came, with Vega borrowing liberally from Almas' signatures, and 'Cien' inserted himself soon after a Lana near-fall, prompting Aiden English' arrival, and another distraction loss for the ailing Rusev Day faction.
The right outcome, the right story, but tiresome action. Though it wasn't terrible, it was some distance below the working standard we should expect from any major wrestling promotion in 2018.
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